Thanksgiving is just around the corner. A time of great food enjoyed by all the friends and family in the comfort of your home. And hosting such an event is no small task.
With more people opting for the vegetarian side of things, considering everyone’s needs at the dinner table might be your biggest challenge. This in no way means you should get rid of the bird. It just means you have room to be creative and make this year’s Thanksgiving a memorable one.
Giving a new spin on the traditional menu, you will provide your loved ones with healthy and delicious food everyone can enjoy. And they will all be thankful to you for it.
Variety Is Key – Fruits and Veg
The key to any good menu is variety. There is an abundance of produce this time of year – use it to your advantage. A trip to the farmers market might give you a sense of the autumn harvest. Organic and healthy, they will add that little bit of flavor more to all your dishes. Even if this is not an option, seasonal fruits and vegetables are in abundance and at your disposal. And with everyone in mind, you should incorporate them in all the courses.
First Impressions – Appetizers
Since first impressions are everything, a tasty appetizer might be a great welcome to your Thanksgiving meal. Most of us eat with our eyes, so make them colorful and interesting. Be creative.
One option could be an array of finger food. They are easy to make and don’t take to much time to prepare. Involving everything from stuffing mushrooms and peppers, mini sandwiches, rolls or bruschettes, kabobs with cheese and veg, or just plain baby carrots or corn you can mix with an awesome dip – the list is endless.
Another fantastic idea could be a welcoming tasty and healthy protein shake which will get you that wow effect and get the party started. With great recipes to choose from, they will open up anyone’s appetite before the main event, or be a healthy alternative to desert.
Stay Light – Opener
Starting off with a bang and everyone feeling right at home, it is time your guests made their way to the dinner table. Since there is a lot more food still to come, your opening dishes should remain light, but tasty.
Great dishes would include creamy soups or chowders, made from pumpkin, apple, corn, mushrooms making everyone feel all warm inside and wanting more. You should also have a cold opener, and a great saladjust might do the trick. A good salad should mix tastes, textures and colors. If you hold the dairy and boost just the veg and nuts, the vegans joining your party will appreciate it that much more.
Fill Anyone’s Belly – Main Course
The main dish, of course, involves that traditional Thanksgiving favorite, the turkey. But since everyone is not a fan, you should make a vegetarian alternative. The main vegetarian dish should be meaty in order to fill anyone’s belly. Dishes include everything from pies, loaves and casseroles to stuffed pumpkins and lasagnas. They also include a manner of ingredients from seasonal veg, soy and rice, to nuts, lentils and dairy products. Most of the vegetarian alternatives are so appealing to the eye that everyone will want some.
Keep It Traditional And Healthy – Side Dishes
The side dishes are a big must, accompanying any Thanksgiving main course. They should be vegetarian. Not just because of your vegetarian guests, but since there is so much fatty foods, you should keep it healthy for your loved ones sake.
Keep the traditional mashed potatoes, corn bread and gravy, but make the stuffing out of apples, walnuts or zucchinis. Bake some pumpkin and peppers, or put out some stir-fried green beans and boiled Brussels sprouts.
You could also make a couple of more salads and some coleslaw, and cranberry sauce on the side. Apart from being healthy it will also bring variety and choice to any feast.
A Course They All Agree On – Desert
A course all your guests anticipate will certainly be desert. Whether you choose cake, pie, crumble, pudding or the mentioned shake, they will all love it. But here you also have room for improvement. Incorporate low-fat dairy products, fruit and dark chocolate in your desert. Make it healthier and still end the party in style!
Vegetarian Thanksgiving dishes don’t close any doors but open you, and your loved ones, to a healthier Thanksgiving dinner. Amaze and satisfy all your guests by being creative, providing them with choice and eye-popping, tasty food. And surely your Thanksgiving party will be a smash hit, remaining on everyone’s lips for years to come.